A Zero Waste Recap: The Best Sustainable Swaps Of 2020

A Zero Waste Recap: The Best Sustainable Swaps Of 2020

Reducing the waste we create starts with not buying things we don't need in the first place.  Anti-consumption is certainly the best approach when trying to live a less wasteful lifestyle, and avoiding making unnecessary purchases is the first step.  However, when we've worn out or used up what we already have and it's time to buy a replacement, it's better to know what the more sustainable, less wasteful options are available to us.  Some work better than others, while a few aren't worth buying at all.

One of the privileges that comes with writing about sustainability is being able to try out sustainable alternatives for the products we're likely to need or want and will use frequently.  Considering many of these products are more expensive because they're sustainably-made and last longer, sharing what worked for me and what didn't can help you make better decisions about the products you buy.

I don't want to encourage you to purchase anything you don't need.  But if you're looking for specific items to help make your life easier and more sustainable, as well as help cut down on waste; it's good to know what your options are and how they hold up to the more wasteful, less eco-friendly kind.  If you don't need the following items, don't buy them and simply use this post as future reference or inspiration for the type of swaps that might be possible for you to make.

These are the best sustainable swaps I made in 2020.  You can find more zero waste swaps here.

Zero Waste Deodorant

For a couple of years, I've been using a crystal deodorant.  It a genuine zero waste product that lasts an age and actually works.  Except they do require a level of trust that not everyone can get behind.  I've never quite gotten used to the lack of fragrance and leap of faith it takes to rely on a rock to keep you smell-free all day.  Pitt Balm gifted me a couple of tins of their low waste deodorant and I'm a convert.  Each reusable or recyclable tin of deodorant lasts around 3-5 weeks, comes in a variety of fragrances (including fragrance-free), doesn't stain you or your cloths and doesn't require reapplication throughout the day.

Sustainable Menstrual Products

At the same time I came off the contraceptive implant last year, I found out I had PCOS.  I've been struggling to find a way of make my periods both comfortable and sustainable.  The menstrual cup isn't for me and neither are period pants or pads.  Thankfully there are plenty of other sustainable options available.  I now use DAYE CBD tampons to help with pain relief alongside sustainable tampons with a reusable applicator from DAME.

Natural Stain Remover Stick

Ever since I moved into my apartment, there has been a huge stain on the carpet right inside the front door left by the previous tenants.  I tried everything to lift it but none of the low waste, eco-friendly cleaning products I used worked.  This little natural stain remover stick cleaned up the stain in less than 20 minutes with minimal effort.  You run the stick under water and rub it onto the stain, leave for a few minutes and then wash it out.  It's made from all-natural ingredients with no artificial dyes or perfumes, and removes stains on everything from carpets to clothes.

Mouthwash Tabs

There are lots of sustainable bathroom swaps to make our daily routines a little less wasteful, however, messing with my dental hygiene isn't something I want to risk so I won't be switching my electric toothbrush for a compostable one any time soon.  However, these LUSH mouthwash tabs are pretty much the same thing as the traditional bottled variety except there's much less waste and the mouthwash tastes nicer.  The tiny bottles contain 80 tabs and can be reused or recycled.  Lots of flavours are available in store (my favourite is the clove one) despite Creme de Menthe being the only option available online.

Sustainably-Made Pillows

Getting a good night's rest is so important and having comfortable bedding is essential for that.  My years-old pillows were causing neck and back pain, which was resolved by replacing them with eco-friendly memory foam pillows.  The Prestige Pillows are sustainably-made, vegan-friendly, and anti-allergy.  The best thing about them is they are adjustable with a filling that can be removed (or put back in) to suit your sleep.  There are so many options when it comes to bedding that knowing what to buy can be a struggle - especially considering pillows and duvets aren't cheap.  I highly recommend these if you're looking for replacements.

Pilling Comb

I've been using an old eyebrow razor I repurposed to gently remove the bobbling from my knitwear.  It did an OK job but after a couple of years the razor is blunt and the handle is bent out of shape.  I'd started to wonder whether I was doing more damaged than good by using it.  Thought Clothing gifted me a dedicated pilling comb and it's been one of those simple tools that are super useful and will help prolong the life of my clothes. It's a good purchase if you want to take better care of your wardrobe.

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A Zero Waste Recap: The Best Sustainable Swaps Of 2020 A Zero Waste Recap: The Best Sustainable Swaps Of 2020